Impacted wisdom teeth occur when the third molars, commonly called wisdom teeth, come in improperly. They could fail to fully emerge through the gumline, not emerge at all, or they may come in horizontally. Impacted wisdom teeth can cause a swollen jaw, sore gums, or headaches. A simple x-ray can tell your dentist where your wisdom teeth are and if they are impacted.
Impacted wisdom teeth often require extraction in the presence of symptoms. What do you need to know about extraction of impacted wisdom teeth?
Addressing Symptoms Before the Surgery
If your impacted wisdom teeth have been causing you symptoms, these problems will need to be taken care of before the extraction takes place. An infected wisdom tooth or irritated gums will require treatment before the surgery happens in order to minimize the chances of infection after the surgery. If you’re getting your impacted wisdom teeth removed, chances are that they’re causing you some problems. Talk to your dentist to see if your symptoms need to be treated before the procedure to encourage a smooth surgery and faster healing time!
Breaking Up the Tooth
During the extraction of your impacted wisdom teeth, your oral surgeon may need to break up the individual teeth into pieces. This would happen if your wisdom teeth are coming in at an extreme angle or if the tooth is simply too large to be removed in one piece. Your oral surgeon will cut the tooth into pieces with a drill and then fully remove all the pieces from the socket. This practice is generally easier for the patient as well in regards to healing time.
If your tooth hasn’t fully emerged through the gumline, the extraction is likely to be more involved. This is because your oral surgeon may need to cut through bone in order to reach the tooth. The bone itself may be preventing the tooth through coming in properly. The more involved the procedure is, the more likely your healing time will be affected because of the larger wound created during the removal.
Your oral surgeon can talk with you about your expected healing time based on how the procedure went. While impacted wisdom teeth typically require a more involved extraction procedure based on their tricky position in the mouth, the majority of people heal within a few days after the procedure. Your surgeon can let you know what to expect and talk with you about your estimated healing time. If your impacted wisdom teeth required no bone extraction and weren’t coming in sideways, you may have an easier time healing!
Although having no symptoms may mean your wisdom teeth may not need to be removed, you should always check with your dentist to determine the potential consequences of leaving your impacted wisdom teeth in. Impacted wisdom teeth often cause symptoms that require their removal. Extracting impacted wisdom teeth is a little more difficult than normal wisdom teeth, but you should heal and feel back to normal in no time!